Fujifilm’s Instax cameras are ultimately about nostalgia and the irreplaceability of having a physical photo in your hand. So it’s rather amusing at first, that the Fujifilm Instax SQUARE SQ10 is effectively a digital camera. But it makes sense.
While far from the truly analogue crowd that will develop their own prints the traditional way, the Instax is recognition of the classic Polaroid’s convenience and fun factor, along with the fact that there’s only a single print on this entire planet. The SQ10 effectively introduces a middle ground. Because the camera records digitally, you have the leeway to store your photos digitally, as well as print them the traditional way.
When printed, there seems to be no major difference between the SQ10 and regular Instax cameras, apart from its Instagram-esque square format. The sensor may be small, but it’s fine for prints. The upside of the digital additions includes the ability to adjust your photos even after you take them. It’s easy to add tweaks in the form of vignetting, exposure, or filters (no need to buy monochrome film) thanks to a very intuitive dial system not unlike the main thumb control you find on DSLR cameras – but it’s really easy to use. The controls are easy to access, and it even has dual shutter buttons to accommodate both left- and right-handed users. However, there’s no selfie mirror this time, though.
As mentioned, you don’t have to print photos immediately, which allows you to pick only the best for printing, saving you money especially when you are the trigger happy sort. The SQ10 also has an expandable microSD slot so you can easily transfer, archive, or use the photos on Instagram if you want. Although this feels counterintuitive to the point of an Instax, it’s intended to be a ‘middle-ground’ or ‘bridge’ product, which it does fairly well.
Whether you are an Instax photographer looking for a digital alternative that gives you some flexibility, or a smartphone photographer who wants to go into film but don’t feel confident about jumping straight into analogue, the SQ10 makes it easy for you take a step forward with ease.